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Birchland's assistant principal takes post in South Hadley


June 20, 2013
By Chris Maza

chrism@thereminder.com

EAST LONGMEADOW — Birchland Park Middle School Assistant Principal Paul Plummer is leaving the school in order to take the principal's job at South Hadley's Michael E. Smith Middle School in July.

Plummer will take over for current principal Erica Faginski-Stark, who will become the South Hadley School District's new director of curriculum and grants management at the end of June.

"My time in East Longmeadow has meant a lot to me," Plummer said. "This was my first true administrative job and because of that, I learned a lot."

Plummer taught for 10 years in the Amherst Regional Public Schools and served briefly as an interim assistant principal before taking the position with Birchland Park, in which he has served for seven years.

Plummer said he was familiar with the South Hadley Public Schools from his time in Amherst and said Michael E. Smith Middle School's reputation for excellence was among the reasons for his interest in the position.

"This was an opportunity I could not pass up. I will certainly miss the people at Birchland Park," he said. "It was great working with Kathy Hill, who is an outstanding principal. I gained a lot of knowledge by working daily with her and a lot of what we accomplished here I will be taking with me."

Plummer said he was especially proud of the collaboration efforts the school put in place, encouraging teachers and staff to work toward achievement goals for students while exchanging ideas on best practices.

He also said Birchland Park, along with the rest of the East Longmeadow Public Schools, had a strong approach to analyzing data.

"Those are two areas that we have worked on a lot here and I hope to bring that knowledge to South Hadley," Plummer said. "It's something they have been working on to a point, but I think they were looking for someone who could get more done in that regard."

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